Outside Economics

Long-term Care Who Needs it Anyway

Posted by Wendell Brock, MBA, ChFC on Thu, Nov 14, 2013

Once my mother asked me about long-term care insurance, she had obtained a policy through AARP, which was short on benefits, or peace of mind. I was early in my career and visiting my mother when the conversation started. Now my mother was an amazing women, she was a retired school teacher, served a church mission, tore down an old dilapidated house and built a new one in its place, and finally settled into a comfortable retirement, she raised seven children in Los Angeles in the 50’s through the 70’s.  

We looked at a some options and settled on one that was a little more expensive (maybe $25 per month), but it had more than twice the benefits. Today’s policies are even better.
elderly womanWhen you are in good health and life is clicking along smoothly, it seems that a long stay in a nursing home or even home health care is something that happens to the other guy! Similar to the young folks who are newly married, maybe with one or two kids, and thinks that life insurance is for people who live riskier lives. This is simply denial!
In today’s world with the higher standard of care, medications, diets, etc., the need for long-term care is more likely than not for our older and wiser population. Families find it more difficult to provide the necessary level of care that our aging population needs. Providing for long-term care is a necessity.
So the problem becomes, which assets are mom and dad going to sell/liquidate in order to provide the care? The family home? The retirement account? The family business? And how will the remaining spouse survive when one enters a care center?

About ten years ago my mother, who was in great health, was diagnosed w
ith Alzheimer’s. She began the medications and had to fight with medicare over the payment. After a couple years her home was too much for her to manage so she went into a retirement center, where she had an independent apartment, soon after that, my sister filed a claim on her long term care policy to help pay the bills. 

It was amazing having the policy, it allowed my mother to have a nice place to live and have a nurse on duty if needed. Eventually, when she required more care she moved to a different center with an Alzheimer’s unit, which provided the additional attention she needed. 

This policy, allowed my mother to really enjoy her final years not worrying about how she was going to be cared for, should she need the extra care. This is peace of mind! She passed away this past spring and her family was all around, she left an amazing posterity, with over 40 grandchildren, and over 50 great-grandchildren to date. My sisters who had the main charge of caring for her, (making the medical/financial decisions, etc.) expressed their gratitude for the policy. It provided them with the peace of mind in knowing that our mother would receive the best car
e and be comfortable in her final days. In short it was a great blessing.

This piece of mind came with a cost, a small cost compared to the benefit. I don’t need to share numbers, simply because everyone is different and with today’s policies, things are different; what matters is the peace of mind, and that is the same. Do you need more peace of mind?

Topics: Long term care, life insurance, Long term care insurance


Wendell W. Brock, MBA, ChFC

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